Baby and Toddler Resort Food Guide
We recently travelled to Fiji with my best friend and her family. The trip didn’t start off so well as we all had gastro and needed to delay the flight 48 hours – you can read more about my tips on the Flying With Kids And Food post. When we did finally arrive in paradise I was a bit worried about how Harry would go with the meal choices he had, mainly I wondered if they would be healthy enough, would he like the food, would eating new food effect sleep and behaviour, and how would he go with a sensitive gastro belly?
I wasn’t expecting Harry to eat as well as he usually does, and I was fully prepared to “let go” a little, but my main concern was that he would refuse everything. All-in-all the food was OK, but not great, I managed to work around my choices; Harry struggled a bit with the loud cafeteria-style eating as he was very distracted; his behaviour did change slightly due to the change in diet but the hot sunny days and fun on the beach seemed to tire him out enough to sleep well. The main thing is we all had an absolute ball and the kids thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
I did learn a few things that might help you in similar situations.
Baby and Toddler Resort Food Guide:
- Have a look at the menus before you decide on a resort. If you are travelling to Fiji, for example, there are lots of islands that have two or more restaurants and this will give you a variety of meal choices.
- If you have a baby who needs puree’s or simple mashed food you have a good chance of having this prepared fresh for you if you give the resort enough warning. As soon as you arrive, talk to reception, tell them you would like pureed vegetables for your baby. They will (usually) be happy to set aside a meal for you each day. You can then mash in some grilled fish or chicken from your own plate.
- Sometimes you are better off ordering an entrée sized adult meal rather than something from the kids’ menu, as they are often far healthier. Typically the kid’s menu will have fried food or creamy pastas as your only option.
- The environment where meals are eaten can play a huge part in how a child eats (a good tip for busy households – try and calm down before meal times and set the scene – see our post Fussy Eating and The Mealtime Ritual for more tips). This was clear to me as I watched Harry’s eating go downhill over the week. There was just so much chaos and noise going on around him. My husband suggested we take some of the meals back to the bure where he could eat in peace – this worked wonders.
- Pack some good quality pre-packaged foods with you. These will come in handy to use as a ‘base’ for a meal. I would use a veggie mash pouch and add beans and/or meat to it for a wholesome meal. Also if your child gets sick or a bad belly these simple, plain meals lack the saturated fats and salts that can irritate a sore tummy.
- When holidaying somewhere hot remember how important liquids are for hydration. Playing on the beach all day is very dehydrating and water breaks will be the last thing on their minds. Remember to keep offering cool bottled water or you could end up with a nasty case of heat stroke.
- All said and done try not to stress too much if your good eating habits aren’t met. Kids are very adaptable, and your little darlings will go back to their old eating ways when you get home. Try not to let holiday style eating follow you back home, let the kids know what you expect from them as soon as you return.
- Enjoy your holiday! Holidays create some of the fondest memories for our children, and enjoying new and delicious food and food moments – such as eating ice-cream at sunset, is all part of it.
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